Category: Articles

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Deals / 1 Jun 2017

How (And Why) to Grab a .design Domain for $5

Choosing a domain name is a tricky thing. You want something smart, original, and easy-to-remember. And you’re trying to find something that hasn’t already been snapped up.

Today we have a great deal for Design Shack readers, on a smart new TLD for designers — .design. Usually $35 per year, today’s your chance to grab your choice of domain for just $5! Read on to find out more.

Typography / 31 May 2017

Color Fonts: A Beginner’s Guide

So what in the heck is a color font? It’s a term that keeps popping up and is starting to gain traction, although use in large design projects is still in its infancy.

Vendors such as Adobe’s Typekit have started to release some color font options with browser support, so there’s some movement toward wider use. Some have even called color fonts “the next big thing in web design.”

Here, we’ll look at the trend and let you decide how big – or not – this concept will be.

Inspiration / 30 May 2017

70+ Corporate & Creative Business Card Mockups

The design of your business cards is vital if you’re looking to make a good first impression. In this post, we’ve collected over 70 of the best free and premium business card mockups that you can use for your next client meeting or design project.

We’re not only covering corporate professional designs, but also profession-specific business cards like those designed for photographers, doctors or even writers. All the mockups are designed to perfection, and come in a variety of easily editable formats!

Graphics / 29 May 2017

4 Reasons Why Your Body Text Should Be Bigger

The body text on your website is too small. While desktop monitors and phone screens seem to be increasing in size, body font sizes have seemingly shrunk. While their original size is the same, they feel smaller than ever.

Too often, I find myself squinting at the screen to read content. And it shouldn’t be that way. Today we’re looking at the reasons for this increasing problem, and how you can fix it!

Navigation / 24 May 2017

Design Trend: Side Navigation Is Everywhere, but Does It Work?

There’s a trending topic in website design navigation: sidebar menus. More designers are working with vertical side navigation for projects, with a specific location on the left side for many of these website designs.

And while it looks nice and can help streamline clutter in the overall canvas, does it really work? Will users respond to side navigation? Is it a design trend that you should consider? Today, we’ll try to get to the heart of the questions with some practical and usable answers.

Graphics / 23 May 2017

50+ Best Minimal Logo Design Templates

How much does it cost to design a professional logo? $500? $1,000? Or $5,000? What if we told you that you can get a great-looking minimal logo design for the price of lunch?

The strategy we’re talking about here is to try using a pre-designed logo template to base your next logo mark or branding project on. Will it be as perfectly tailor-made as a high-end custom logo? Probably not. But it’s a great solution for getting your branding project started fast. To show you how amazing these logo templates can be, we picked some of the best minimalist logo designs from Envato Elements.

With some basic Adobe Illustrator or Adobe Photoshop knowledge and a $29 subscription to Envato Elements, you can download any (or all) of these logo templates to design your own creative logo all by yourself. It’s a great, flexible way to experiment with your next logo project!

Business / 22 May 2017

15 Skills Every Design Client Expects You to Have

While every design project is a little bit different, almost every client expects you to be a jack of all trades to some degree. Regardless of the project, designers are often expected to provide a complete solution for clients, even though most of us don’t have all the same skills.

In addition to design, clients may ask for expertise in marketing, code, or illustration. It can be a difficult balance at times. But knowing what clients might expect can help you have a plan for how to deal with specific requests, whether it is offering a referral to someone else or adding a new skill to your portfolio.

Most of these examples come from personal experience. And while I didn’t fulfill all the requested needs, seeing what a client expects from their perspective is an interesting exercise!

Business / 17 May 2017

How Many Design Options Should You Show a Client?

You’ve been working on a client project for a little while now. It could be a website design, brochure, or something else altogether — but you’ve spent some time on it. You like the concept. Is that all you need to go back to the client with? Or do you need to create a couple more options for the design review?

There’s a balance of creating enough for a client to choose from, and avoiding work that you know will certainly just get thrown aside. If you know the client well, chances are you can present just one design option. (Seriously!)

Inspiration / 16 May 2017

30+ Best Scene and Mockup Generators of 2017

It’s not an easy job to find the perfect image or the mockup to showcase your product when designing a hero image for a website, a header image for a blog, or for an advertising project.

Mostly because high-quality stock photos and images are hard to find, and can come with hefty price tags. Even when you do find a great image, you later discover that someone else is using that exact same image on a different website. Which brings you back to square one. However, there’s a simpler solution to this problem: Scene generators!

Scene and mockup generators are bundles of elements and objects, which you can use to create your own unique header images, product mockup scenes, and custom graphics however you like. The best part is that you’ll be able to use these scene generators to create as many images for different projects.

We handpicked a set of an amazing scene and mockup generators from Envato Elements. You can download all of these files for only $29 per month by simply subscribing to Envato Elements!

Graphics / 15 May 2017

3 Tips for Developing a Unique Logo Design

Every business or website needs one – a logo. A logo is how users and customers will identify your website or brand. And a good logo is identifiable, readable and leaves a lasting impression with users.

Your logo is how people see you across different mediums, from online to social media to printed materials. So how do you develop this key piece of branding if you don’t already have one? (Or how do you rethink the one you have but don’t like?) Here are three tips to help you get started!

Graphics / 10 May 2017

Brutalism: A New Trend in Web Design

Some designs aren’t polished and clean. They are rough, jarring and ragged. Yet they still work and communicate effectively. This class of websites makes up the raw trend called brutalism.

While it is somewhat new to web concepts, it’s been around for decades as a popular technique for posters and art in the 1950s, 60s and 70s. Today’s brutalism is starkly different from what you are used to seeing… and that’s why it’s likely to catch your attention. Let’s take a look at what it is (and I’ll share why I’m already over it!)

Inspiration / 9 May 2017

100+ iPad Mockups: PSDs, Photos & Vectors

For displaying your latest and greatest responsive website design, or app interface, having a beautiful iPad mockup on which to demonstrate it can be really helpful.

Today, we’re taking a look at almost a hundred different tablet and iPad mockups, in all shapes and sizes, that can make your app or website interface stand out. They vary between photograph-based PSD mockups, or vectors that can scale to any size. Some are free, some cost a few dollars, but all of them are rather lovely!